Google patents hint at future Nexus sliders

Google patents hint at future Nexus sliders
Last fall, the internet was briefly agog when a frequent leaker of all things Nexus tweeted that there would be a version with a slide out keyboard. That hasn’t materialized with the Galaxy Nexus models, but according to some fast-track patents that Google filed with the USPTO in January, a Nexus slider is something they are keenly interested in.

A series of three patents were field, which listed lead Android developer Andy Rubin as the main inventor. Each showed new internal mechanisms that appear to allow for a slider that is thinner, and has less overlap when opened, then other devices. The upshot would be a larger physical keyboard without a bulkier phone. The mechanisms (pictured below) include a “spring and stabilizing link” slider, a “serpentine spring styled” slider, and an innovative looking “scissor-hinge” slider.

We assume that each type of mechanism must have tradeoffs that would make them preferable in different types of products, but what those specific advantages are were not laid out in the patent filings. With so much room available to the physical keyboard, the filed patents did note that several other items could go there, including notification LEDs, a little trackpad, or the keyboard could be replaced with another touchscreen (or heck, game controls for an Xperia Play successor).

It should come as no surprise that Rubin, one of the creative forces behind Danger’s series of Sidekick sliders, would be interested in pushing the technology forward. But the fast-track nature of the patent suggests that Google would like to make one of these devices sooner rather than later – perhaps they’re hoping to get a sexy Android slider to market to scoop up some of the defecting BlackBerry users that are jumping ship in droves?

Would you pick one of these up if/when Google ships a Nexus slider? Oh, and in case it wasn’t obvious, the color image at top is just a Photoshop hack of the existing Galaxy Nexus – we’re sure the final product will have little to no resemblance.



source: Patent Bolt via Cnet

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29 Comments

1. ivanko34

Posts: 617; Member since: Sep 04, 2011

It needed a lot of work to find this solution. This patent is very different of the empty fake patents of apple

2. Mozarrt

Posts: 301; Member since: Oct 08, 2011

You had to mention Apple, don't people ever get tired of you?

3. Mozarrt

Posts: 301; Member since: Oct 08, 2011

A phone with the same keyboard as the T-Mobile G1, and I'm heading towards the store now.

12. joseg81

Posts: 204; Member since: Jul 15, 2011

that's the 1st thing i thought. i would definitely but this cuz it reminds me of my 1st android the G1 :)

4. frydaexiii

Posts: 1476; Member since: Dec 01, 2011

Hmm? A tablet perhaps?

5. itiswhatitis

Posts: 423; Member since: Jan 23, 2012

i could only understand the first one,the rest however i look at gives me headache!!

6. facelessbelief

Posts: 13; Member since: Apr 27, 2012

Interesting. It seems like a good idea, I think the Nexus phones would be a great place to try out a hinge system like that. Only time will tell, if the physical keyboarded smart phones are something that is bought up. Maybe if it has some higher tech in it. I would buy it. It seems like a lot of the slide-out phones come with lower end tech.

7. androidornothing

Posts: 143; Member since: Apr 26, 2012

Lol why the hell would anyone want a slider anymore that's so old school!!!!!!

8. KingKurogiii

Posts: 5713; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

a Motorola Nexus Slider...mmmm! i'm getting hot just thinking about it. ;]

11. N.Reynolds

Posts: 257; Member since: Feb 15, 2011

I agree! I think this could be an idea for a Motorola Nexus slider considering Motorola already makes a pretty nice slider line with the Droid series and now that Google owns/will own Motorola this could be the next nexus! I am very interested in this! The keyboard has me wowed considering it looks like there is a lot more keys than usual.

9. skymitch89

Posts: 1451; Member since: Nov 05, 2010

The “spring and stabilizing link” slider looks a little bit like the one used in the T-Mo G1. The "extra space" could also be used to add more rows of keys as seen in one of the pics (there are 6 rows of keys instead of 4 or 5).

10. GJanee

Posts: 214; Member since: Jun 29, 2011

wow, i don't think i've seen anything as ugly as this concept so far in terms of smartphone design...

13. Xquisite

Posts: 87; Member since: Apr 23, 2012

People still use sliders? Might as well just make a Nexus Flip Phone.

14. jan25

Posts: 470; Member since: Feb 26, 2012

keyboard on a screen is much more comfortable than a physical keyboard. you just need to get used to it, just like you did when you first got your crapberry

15. joseg81

Posts: 204; Member since: Jul 15, 2011

could this be a new sidekick? if i remember correctly they did say the line was gonna continue even though they discontinued that last one.

16. Chronos

Posts: 258; Member since: Feb 25, 2012

I'll gladly stick with an all-touch Nexus.

17. MorePhonesThanNeeded

Posts: 645; Member since: Oct 23, 2011

One thing this site proves that there is no shortage of self centered people who think what they like is fine for everyone else. No one cares if you don't like slider phones and physical kb, there are many people who do like them. Shut up and move along, the nerve of some people so narrow minded it make you wonder if they can even dream. That photoshopped Nexus looks ugly, but I understand what Google is playing at, they are looking to maximize the space on the physical pad, possibly allowing for closer resemblance to actual keyboards on PC's and make it so that it's sturdy and functional on a smart phone without making it bulky and unsightly. Innovation should be encourage, not the idiocy of narrowminded idiots who think that their way of thought is the only way.

21. akhi216

Posts: 61; Member since: May 01, 2011

This...seriously.

18. kabel

Posts: 145; Member since: Nov 06, 2011

I, for one, no matter how hard i try, can't get used to software keyboard. I'm dreaming for a nexus phone with hardware keyboard ... But a good one ... Not like the one in Samsung Galaxy Captivate ... It was a good try from Samsung, but the keyboard was not good, at least to me ... If they can make it as good as on Nokia E7, i would pay 1k$ without thinking twice ... Yes, it is that bad with software keyboards (or i should have say, that much i hate them) ...

19. cGmC11

Posts: 152; Member since: Apr 02, 2012

Oooohhhh!!!! Nooooooo!!!! Please nooooooo!!!nooooooo

20. good2great

Posts: 1042; Member since: Feb 22, 2012

this would be cool back in the G1 era but nowadays there isnt a need for physical keyboards they just get in the way... the technology in software keyboards are becoming easier and easier to use.

22. akhi216

Posts: 61; Member since: May 01, 2011

I'm getting a giddy inside thinking of a possible. Motorola Nexus Slide with an LTE radio.

23. JcHnd

Posts: 243; Member since: Apr 30, 2012

I really think qwerty keyboard phones are fading away... and I really need one sometimes my phone overheats and it's sorta difficult to use the on-screen keyboard... would be nice to have them back!

24. PryvateiDz

Posts: 439; Member since: Jul 31, 2011

Heck yeah, especially if it looks like that Black markup @ the top. BRING IT ON!

25. KFear

Posts: 170; Member since: Feb 06, 2012

Sliders are not cool anymore. They are now considered niche devices.

26. camcam

Posts: 1; Member since: May 01, 2012

"keyboard on a screen is much more comfortable than a physical keyboard" "nowadays there isnt a need for physical keyboards" "Sliders are not cool anymore" What value do you think you're adding to this conversation? Please, for the love of His Noodly Appendages, STFU. You don't want a hardware keyboard? Great. You have a wide and varied selection of phones to choose from. I, for one, will be delighted if we get a new device with a hardware keyboard. My options for upgrading from Desire Z (G2) are non-existent at the moment. The mechanism in the second and third pics looks identical to the G1 to me, although I can't recall how it was sprung (I think it might have been sprung like the scissor hinge in the fourth pic). Anyway, my fingers are crossed.

27. ibap

Posts: 865; Member since: Sep 09, 2009

Please! Please! Please! I hate touch screen keyboards, and I'm female and don't have ham-sized hands. Perhaps it is because I can actually type! And spell! And I find it amusing to be able to guess that someone typed something on a touch screen and that is why there are so many little things that they might have othewise fixed before they hit send. Give me an actual keyboard with cursor keys any day.

28. akhi216

Posts: 61; Member since: May 01, 2011

Perhaps Android converts from the iOS camp can free their minds from Mr. Jobs' (RIP) way of doing things for a second they would realize that having a choice is always good, and Android is all about having a choice. Bring on the Nexus Slide.

29. akhi216

Posts: 61; Member since: May 01, 2011

Let's not forget that it was a slider phone, the Motorola Droid, that initially propelled Android to greatness. It's nice to see Android returning to it's roots.

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